Emily Strouphauer, BSA: Linking Pediatric Psoriasis to Anxiety, Depression

In her HCPLive interview, Emily Strouphauer, BSA, spoke about her team’s recent findings on the association between pediatric psoriasis and anxiety and depression.

During her HCPLive interview, Emily Strouphauer, BSA, MD candidate at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, spoke about her team’s research into the association between psoriasis and depression/anxiety in younger patients.

Strouphauer began with a discussion about distinctions between mental health struggles for younger psoriasis patients versus older patients.

“It's hard to say if there's a difference between how pediatric patients and adult patients deal with it, because a lot of times kids are at the age where they don't really quite know yet how to express what's going on,” Strouphauer explained. “I mean, some of the older kids do. So that's pretty understudied, and hard to say. But we do know that in both pediatric and adult populations, there's this positive relationship between psoriasis and the onset of anxiety and depression.”

Strouphauer explained her views on what the main distinctions might be between the 2 groups, given the developmental stage of pediatric patients.

She described the perceptions formed during childhood as being more difficult to erase and rewrite, as opposed to those formed in adulthood.

“I think that the most interesting distinction and the timing of when psoriasis presents with respect to is with respect to psychosocial development,” she said. “So identity formation is this longitudinal event, but it's most malleable in childhood adolescence. So when kids are trying to really figure out who they are, they're being influenced by, you know, self esteem and social perceptions, which can cause significant distress, especially when compounded by having a cutaneous disorder that everyone's seeing.”

To learn more information about anxiety, depression, and psoriasis in pediatric patients, watch the full interview above.